There is no better example of how conservative Justices on the Supreme Court get the Constitution’s text and history dead wrong than the Court’s cases giving states immunity from suit in federal court for violations of federal law.
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The Constitution’s text and history—in particular the Commerce Clause, the Taxing Power, and the Necessary and Proper Clause—give the federal government substantial power to enact a national solution to a national problem. A federal district court agreed, rejecting Seven-Sky’s challenge to Affordable Care Act. Seven-Sky appealed to the D.C. Circuit.
Tea Party activists claim to love the Constitution, except for all the parts of our nation’s foundational document that they would prefer to ignore or repeal outright. Dismissing the full story of our Constitution, including the 27 Amendments ratified by the American people over the last 220 years, these self-professed “constitutional conservatives” have distorted the Constitution beyond all recognition, cherrypicking the parts of the document they like, and jettisoning the rest.
This morning, Judge John D. Bates of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued a welcome and thoroughgoing rebuke of a challenge to the Voting Rights Act brought by Shelby County, Alabama. Judge Bates’ comprehensive 151-page opinion rejected Shelby County’s challenge to Congress’ 2006 near-unanimous renewal of the Act’s preclearance requirement, and is the first decision to consider the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act since the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2009 opinion in NAMUDNO v.
Yesterday afternoon, the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights held a hearing on “New State Voting Laws: Barriers to the Ballots,” examining the spate of new voting laws passed throughout the Nation making it harder for Americans to exercise one of our most precious constitutional rights -- the right to vote. In what has been called a “war on voting,” new state laws have imposed